Today, I felt like I needed to take a break from my normal posts and write about a serious subject. Recently, I experienced a break-up that was caused by emotional abuse. After sharing my story with friends and family, I have been overwhelmed with women's stories of their own experiences with abuse in all forms. I don't want to single anyone out since this can be a very scary and even embarrassing issue to deal with. However, I wanted to talk about the ways in which these experiences can bond us and even help each other to heal.
I'll start with my story first: this was the same guy I wrote about previously who moved away to Atlanta and with whom I decided to end the relationship. After not speaking for almost a year, he contacted me and expressed the desire to fly me to Atlanta for the weekend. I accepted since I didn't want to live with the regret of not seeing this relationship out to its full potential. While I was there, he flew into a drunken rage at a crowded restaurant over a comment I had made (which isn't even relevant at this point). He was yelling and swearing at me while pointing his finger in my face. I honestly have never been so embarrassed in my life and was just trying to hold myself together while in public. I knew from that point on, that this relationship was a lost cause and no one deserves to be treated like that, ever.
As I said before, after coming back home and sharing my story, I realized that many of my friends had experienced abuse by the hand of their partners. I encouraged my friends to tell me their stories and share what they felt comfortable with. It is often difficult to look back on such an emotionally draining part of your life, so I appreciated their candidness. I heard stories that ranged from physical abuse to a partner threatening to kill themselves if the person broke up with them.
It's scary to think that this is so common in our world but yet, people are not encouraged to talk about it openly. We need to let the victims know that they aren't to blame.
The next step is to try to move past these harrowing incidents and learn from them. I encourage others to seek help from mental health professionals as I have. Talking to someone who is a neutral, third party can help you look at the situation from a different perspective. I know I cannot blame myself for any of the abuse that I have suffered but I try to learn from what happened to me and I will not allow it to happen again.
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